Answers to Brendan's questions. Any questions? :D
Ability scores generation method?
3d6 in row but some of my current players are yellow-bellied sissies so I allow them to roll 3d6 and arrange them freely (except rolling for Tech Level). I don't care about it as stats do not prolong their lifespan.
How are death and dying handled?
PCs are unconscious when HP drops to zero. When HP is down for (level+1), PC is dead. Treating wounds can restore 1d4 HP but no more than amount lost in the last combat. Drinking bottle of booze (wound binding or drinking only, once per session) can restore 1d6 HP but if "6" is rolled PC loses one HP.
What about raising the dead?
Raise Dead is unavailable in my campaign but there are three other (more dangerous to use) spells that can raise dead: Soul Graft, Hands of Sethra and Infernal Return.
Also, check out my Death Experience table.
How are replacement PCs handled?
Sometimes they simply appear out of nowhere :D For many years I was very focused on "realistic" aspects of adding new PCs to the party but now we simply do not care.
Initiative: individual, group, or something else?
Individual and determined by Referee. No rolls. Armor heaviness, weapon reach, agility and heaviness of the weapon can affect the initiative, as well as millions of other factors.
Are there critical hits and fumbles? How do they work?
Critical hit - maximum damage (6 in most cases). Fumble - many possible fuckups - dropping the weapon, falling prone, hitting a friend etc etc etc.
Do I get any benefits for wearing a helmet?
Anti-critical hits + possible damage reduction for stone blocks hitting one's head.
Can I hurt my friends if I fire into melee or do something similarly silly?
Will we need to run from some encounters, or will we be able to kill everything?
Sometimes you may be killed in one, two rounds if you decide to stay and try to kill the "random spawn".
Level-draining monsters: yes or no?
Yes, but they are rather rare.
Are there going to be cases where a failed save results in PC death?
Yes. Poison, effects of player's (not PC's) stupidity, dragon breath, wrath of god etc.
How strictly are encumbrance & resources tracked?
Encumberance - only common sense is a factor, resources - yes, definitely.
What's required when my PC gains a level? Training? Do I get new spells automatically? Can it happen in the middle of an adventure, or do I have to wait for down time?
Level gaining occur automatically but all XP is given at the end of each game session. PCs must to obtain new spells in some way.
What do I get experience for?
Carousing, killing monsters, wasting cash, sacrifices, discoveries, stupid ideas, great ideas, luck, Referee's whim.
How are traps located? Description, dice rolling, or some combination?
Are retainers encouraged and how does morale work?
Morale works mostly in role-playing way but most retainers are rather courageous (or maybe stupid?), at least during their first fight :D Easiest way to encourage henchmen is good payment and fair treating.
How do I identify magic items?
Lol, I don't know. Easiest way is to pay someone to do it in the city. Potions may be identified by tasting them, magic weapons and armor may be automatically id'd after several "uses".
Can I buy magic items? Oh, come on: how about just potions?
Yeah, potions may be bought but they are rather pricey. Also I think about adding non-magical +1 weapons as master-crafted and ridiculously overpriced stuff.
Can I create magic items? When and how?
Yes but it requires high level and epic deeds or huge ammount of cash, knowledge and luck.
What about splitting the party?
No problems with that. I can handle it even if there are three, four groups :D